Sightings 2020

NOTE: All photos are copyrighted by the photographer & may not be used or reprinted without their permission.

12/28/20 – Wantage Twp (Patty and Pete Hefferan) have many Black-capped Chickadees, Tufted Titmice, Mourning Doves, a pair of Northern Cardinals, & Blue Jays. Whenever we drive down 565 (through the year) we see at least 4-5 hawks balanced on wires along the roadside. They are largely Red-tailed Hawks and Broad-winged Hawks, but we have seen a Northern Goshawk. We saw a Bald Eagle fly over a field as well.
12/21/20 – Wallkill River Nat’l Wildlife Refuge (Allison Orsi) – saw at least 2 Short-eared Owls flying about the marsh.
12/18/20 – Andover Twp (Deborah Bifulco)Has over 30 Dark-eyed Juncos and over 10 White-throated Sparrows, 5 male Northern Cardinals, Black-capped Chickadees, Tufted Titmice, American Goldfinches, White-breasted Nuthatches, 7 Pine Siskins, lower than normal numbers of House Finch, and 1 European Starling having a very enthusiastic bath.
12/15/20 – Lafayette Twp (Barb Sendelbach) – Has had 15+ of both male and female Brown-headed Cowbirds along with a handful of Common Grackles, & Northern Cardinals. Dark-eyed Junco numbers have been averaging around 25-30 at last count. White-throated and Song Sparrows are much lower with maybe just 2 or 3 at a time.
12/6/20 – Search for Eagles trip (Jack Padalino, leader) Birds seen included Canada Goose, Mallard, Common Merganser, Ring-billed Gull, Turkey Vulture, Coopers Hawk, Bald Eagle, Red-tailed Hawk, Peregrine Falcon, Rock Pigeon, Mourning Dove, Belted Kingfisher, Red-bellied Woodpecker, Hairy Woodpecker, Downy Woodpecker, Pileated Woodpecker, Blue Jay, American Crow, Common Raven, Tufted Titmouse, Black-capped Chickadee, Red-breasted Nuthatch, White-breasted Nuthatch, Eastern Bluebird, European Starling, Cedar Waxwing, Dark-eyed Junco, Northern Cardinal, House Finch, Pine Siskin, & American Goldfinch.

11/29/20 – Swartswood State Park (Alice Piatek & Alan Gutmore) – Mute Swans, Canada Geese, Buffleheads, variety of Gulls (too far to discern).

11/28/20 – Culvers & Swartswood Lakes (Don & Donna Traylor) – We had Mallard, American Black Duck, Canada Goose, American Wigeon, Gadwall, Hooded & Common Merganser, Bufflehead, scaup species, Mute Swan, Bald Eagle (near the nest at Culvers).

11/27/20 – Liberty Loop south pool, Wallkill River National Wildlife Refuge (Karyn Cichocki & Debbie Bifulco) – had lots of Green-winged Teal, American Wigeon, a pair of Northern Pintails, Gadwall, Common Merganser, American Coot, at least 100 Mallards and 200 Canada Geese, a Northern Harrier, and 3 Greater Yellowlegs.

11/24/20 – Swartswood State Park (Deborah Bifulco, Donna Traylor, Karyn Cichocki) – saw a pair of very cooperative Fox Sparrows. Other species seen: Yellow-bellied Sapsucker, Red-bellied Woodpecker, White-throated Sparrow, American Goldfinch, Bufflehead, Mute Swan, White-breasted Nuthatch, Carolina Wren, and Northern Cardinal. Andover Twp (Deborah) – saw the first American Tree Sparrow of the year. She continues to have higher than usual American Goldfinch and Black-capped Chickadee numbers; is still seeing 2-4 Pine Siskins every day, always with the Am. Goldfinches.

11/8/20 – Swartswood State Park (Alice Piatek & Alan Gutmore) – observed Mute Swans, Canada Geese, Buffleheads, Great Blue Heron, American Crow, Turkey Vulture, Blue Jays, Dark-eyed Juncos.

11/11/20 – Great Swamp National Wildlife Refuge (Alice Piatek & Alan Gutmore) observed Hooded and Common Mergansers, Peregrine Falcon, American Crow, Blue Jays.

10/26/20 – Lafayette Twp (Karyn Cichocki) – had 1 male & 4 female Purple Finches, 1 American Goldfinch, 7 Pine Siskins, 10 House Finches, White-breasted Nuthatch, Black-capped Chickadees, Tufted Titmice, House Sparrows, American Robins, a small flock of European Starlings, White-throated Sparrows (up to 5), Red-bellied and Downy Woodpeckers.

10/24 & 10/25/20 – Sussex Lakes (Marianne Ofenloch)On 10/24, in addition to Mallards, American Black Ducks, Canada Geese, and Mute Swans that have been on Culvers Lake for most of the month, a pair of Northern Pintails and three Brant were also there. There were 2 Black Scoter hens spotted at Swartswood Lake on 10/25 by former club member Al Boyd; a 3rd hen had joined the pair by the time I got there. On the way home, I stopped at Culvers Lake again and found more newly-arrived migrants, including a pair of Red-breasted Mergansers, small groups of Ring-necked Ducks and Bufflehead, 3 American Wigeons, and a Greater Scaup hen. Many flocks of southbound Canada Geese were seen flying high overhead throughout the day on Sunday.

10/25/20 – Paulinskill River Wildlife Management Area/Hyper Humus – Congrats to club member Bradley White, who found a Nelson’s Sparrow in Hyper Humus on Saturday morning (his photo attached). This is at least the 4th record of this species for the county. Marianne Ofenloch

Nelson's Sparrow-Bradley White

10/24/20 – Portland, PA (Sandy McPhail) – had a Winter Wren a few feet away hopping around in the pokeweed. His little tail was sticking straight up, so cute! I usually get one here this time of year.

10/15/20 – Frankford Twp (Donna and Don Traylor) – Pine Siskin numbers are increasing – well over a dozen today. Purple Finches are also at about a dozen. Decent numbers of White-throated Sparrows along with a Carolina Wren.

10/15/20 – Lafayette Twp (Karyn Cichocki) – had about 20 Pine Siskins, 2 female, and 1 male Purple Finch. Wallkill River National Wildlife Refuge – (Karyn, Debbie Bifulco, Allison Orsi, Giselle Smisko) had flocks of Yellow-rumped Warblers feeding on poison ivy & Virginia creeper berries. Four Sandhill Cranes flew overhead. Had White-throated, Swamp, Field, & Song Sparrows, at least 23 Greater Yellowlegs, a few Mallards, 4 Common Gallinule, 1 adult & 1 immature Bald Eagle, 3 Northern Harriers, 1 Cooper’s Hawk, 1 Sharp-shinned Hawk, and 8 Turkey Vultures flew around the area. The bushes and trees along the trails were quite active; we had close views of several Blackpoll & Palm Warblers, Golden & Ruby-crowned Kinglets, female Purple Finch, Cedar Waxwings, & Pine Siskins. At Owens Station Rd., we had 3 Blue-headed Vireos and a Yellow-bellied Sapsucker.  In all there were 39 species. 

10/13/20 – Andover Twp (Deborah Bifulco) – had Blue-headed Vireo, both Ruby and Golden- crowned Kinglets, Yellow-rumped Warbler, male Black-throated Blue Warbler, several Pine Warblers, and more Pine Siskins and Purple Finches.

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10/12/20 – Andover Twp (Steve Fitzsimmons) – had a flock of Purple Finches (2 males and 4 females), a sporadic sighting of a single Red-breasted Nuthatch, a Hairy Woodpecker, & 2 Common Ravens continue to be heard almost daily and seen often.

10/8/20 – Culvers Lake (Marianne Ofenloch) – Highlights included small flocks of American Pipits, Yellow-rumped Warblers, and Palm Warblers foraging in the causeway and a Bald Eagle hauling what appeared to be a channel catfish for the lunch break. In the late afternoon, I enjoyed watching the only bird remaining at the causeway: a gorgeously-lit Great Blue Heron.

10/8/20 – Wallkill River Nat’l Wildlife Refuge (Allison Orsi) – Saw 32 species, including Black-throated Green Warbler, lots of Yellow-rumped Warblers, Palm Warbler, & a Ruby-crowned Kinglet.

10/9/20 – Portland, PA (Sandy McPhail) had a first of the season White-throated Sparrow under the feeder this morning.

10/5/10 – Lafayette Twp (Karyn Cichocki) – had a few American Robins, Gray Catbirds, a large flock of European Starlings with a few Brown-headed Cowbirds.

10/4/20 – Frankford Twp (Donna Traylor) we had a Ruby-throated Hummingbird which is a new late date for the yard. On Friday, we had a female Purple Finch. 

10/4/20 – Hewitt (Russ Edwards) – had a Ruby-throated Hummingbird at a feeder.

10/1/20 – Frankford Twp – Donna Traylor reports seeing a Ruby-throated Hummingbird at her feeder.

10/1/20 – Milford, PA (Karyn Cichocki) – my brother-in-law found a spotted turtle walking on their driveway and my sister took a picture.  They wondered if it was unusual to see such a small turtle this time of year.  This is the second time they have had a spotted turtle in their yard, which is next to a swampy area.

10/1/20 – Wallkill River NWR (Karyn Cichocki, Deborah Bifulco) – birded the Sussex part of the Liberty Loop trail. Heard & saw the Sandhill Cranes. Ducks: Green-winged & Blue-winged Teals, several American Wigeons, Northern Shovelers, and lots of Mallards. Tommy Sudol reported seeing Northern Pintails. Other water birds were Great Blue & Green Herons, Great Egret, Common Gallinule, Greater & Lesser Yellowlegs, Pectoral & Least Sandpipers, and possible Solitary Sandpiper. Large numbers of Tree Swallows continue to fly over head and feed over the water. Other birds seen: American Kestrel, female Purple Finch, Red-eyed Vireo, Blackburnian & Palm Warblers, American Redstart, and several Common Yellowthroats. Roy Road (Karyn) had at least 7 American Kestrels and 6 Eastern Meadowlarks. There may have been more as they would bob up and down in the grass.  This is the first time she’s seen them in the fall.

9/30/2020 – Delaware Water Gap Nat’l Recreation Area/Montague (Marianne Ofenloch) – enjoyed watching a large black bear as it fed on berries about 100 yards away on the trail. Also saw a young female bear with 3 cubs standing in a neighbor’s field. There were also plenty of white-tailed deer running across the roads, so be extra-alert as you bird or drive around the county, especially near dawn & dusk…and don’t forget to secure trash and bird feeders to prevent inadvertent attraction of foraging bears!

9/30/20 – Andover Twp (Deborah Bifulco) – Although I frequently hear Northern Flickers in the woods behind our house, they never visit my feeders and I rarely catch sight of them. So, I was pretty happy to see a female in the bird bath & eating ants from our walkway.

9/30/20 – Lafayette (Barb Sendelbach) – saw her first-of-season Golden-crowned Kinglet and Yellow-bellied Sapsucker, as well as 2 resident Pileated Woodpeckers, in the yard.

9/30/20 – Wantage Twp. (Patty Hefferan) – I took my cue from Marianne who birded Roy Road in Wantage. I stopped there today 9/30 and saw a Northern Mockingbird, flocks of American Crows, some Common Ravens, Blue Jays and (I believe a Warbling Vireo – the light was bad). I got to see the 3 American Kestrels she spotted the other day.

9/29/20 – Lafayette (Barb Sendelbach) – had a small mixed group of American Redstarts & a few immature Northern Parula; the Carolina Wren chased them away. The young wrens are very territorial.  They are even chasing the parents away at times. Took a photo of the soggy bear cub that was looking in the back door and the Swainson’s Thrush that was feeding on berries on Sunday.

9/28/20 – Sparta Twp (Matt Skalla) – I’ve been using my trail cam for years and have never had pictures of an owl. This week, on the same night, I got a Barred Owl and a Great Horned Owl. The camera was on Sparta Mt just upstream from Ryker Lake. Videos uploaded to Flickr.

9/28/20 – Twin Lakes/Kittatinny Valley SP & Andover Twp (Deborah Bifulco) – In the past week at Kittatinny Valley SP on Twin Lakes, had Pied-billed Grebe, Green Heron, Great Blue Heron, Red-shouldered Hawk, Common Ravens, and Merlin. In her yard, she had a small group of migrants which included American Redstart and Red-eyed Vireo. Also had Blue Jays, Gray Catbirds, American Robins, Ruby-throated hummingbird, American Goldfinch, House Finch, Tufted Titmouse, Black-capped Chickadee, Downy and Red-bellied Woodpeckers, White-breasted Nuthatch, House Wren, & Carolina Wren.

9/27/20 – Lafayette (Barb Sendelbach) – Dozens of migrants came through the yard, feasting on insects while the regulars flitted about the feeder. Species seen from mid to late afternoon: Tufted Titmouse, White-breasted Nuthatch, Downy Woodpecker, Red-bellied Woodpecker, Blue Jay, Mourning Dove, Gray Catbird, Carolina Wren, House Finch, American Goldfinch, Black-capped Chickadee, American Crow, Common Raven, Turkey Vulture, Scarlet Tanager, Rose-breasted Grosbeak, Magnolia Warbler, Northern Parula, Blackpoll Warbler, Black-throated Green Warbler, Red-eyed Vireo, Eastern Wood Pewee.

9/27/20 – Lafayette (Barb Sendelbach) – saw 1 Northern Parula, 1 Black-throated Green Warbler, a Chestnut-sided Warbler, a Cooper’s Hawk. 2 Swainson’s Thrushes were eating berries in the back and probably the grapes in the driveway.

9/27/20 – Roy Road, Wantage Twp (Marianne Ofenloch) -Had Eastern Bluebirds, Palm Warblers, Chipping Sparrows, and at least 2 Savannah Sparrows foraging along the roadside. A huge domestic Mallard drake was keeping company with a lone Canada Goose & 4 American Kestrels were hunting grasshoppers, occasionally perching on utility wires to eat their prey. A Turkey Vulture was eating something on the ground in a field. About 40 raucous American Crows were perched in nearby trees, and sometimes a few of them would land on the ground and try to slowly approach the vulture; it only had to lunge briefly at them to chase them back. A young Peregrine Falcon swooped at some of the crows and chased them. The falcon perched briefly in a tree and then suddenly chased a young Cooper’s Hawk. Both raptors alternately chased each other as well as the crows. The Cooper’s was by far the most aggressive, nearly succeeding in grabbing a crow by the tail. Each raptor also dove at the vulture a few times, but it was as intolerant of them as it had been of the crows. This drama went on for over 40 minutes until the Peregrine flew further north along the road to pursue a large flock of European Starlings and the Cooper’s left the area along with most of the crows. And the vulture had a full meal, losing nothing to the stalkers.

9/27/20 – Twin Lakes/Kittatinny Valley State Park (Mike Tracy) – Tom Halliwell found a Connecticut Warbler that Mike photographed. Last week, Tom found a Philadelphia Vireo that Mike also photographed. There was also a flock of American Pipits there today.

9/26/20 – Sparta Twp (Bill & Connie Warren) – had 2 Pine Siskins, which they hadn’t seen in over 2 years, and saw a female Ruby-throated Hummingbird flitting among the lantana, which is still vibrant in pots on the desk.

9/25/20 – Frankford Twp (Donna and Don Traylor) – One Ruby-throated Hummingbird continues at our feeder as of today. Had a late Wood Thrush & a Great Horned Owl was calling on 9/23.

9/25/20 – Lafayette Twp (Barbara Sendelbach) – hearing your Great Horned Owl & Barred Owls calling.

9/25/20 – Lafayette Twp (Karyn Cichocki) – had our first White-throated Sparrow of the season in the yard.

9/25/20 – Hewitt (Russ Edwards) – continues to have at least one Ruby-throated Hummingbird.

9/25/20 – Sparta Twp (Jill Bainbridge) – Had a quick flyby of a Ruby-throated Hummingbird this morning.

9/24/20 – Culvers Lake (Lee & Terry McQuillin) – We are still seeing a Ruby-throated Hummingbird.

9/24/20 – Byram Twp (Steve Fitzsimmons) – Two weeks ago, I had 4 Ruby-throated Hummingbirds vying for a spot at my feeder; since the cold snap, I am lucky to see two at one time. Also, I routinely hear and sometimes see Common Ravens in my neighborhood. 

9/24/20 – Stokes State Forest (Giselle Smisko) – Quiet day hawk watching in Stokes State Forest; even the locals kept a low profile with the haze. Dpotted a small flock of Dark-eyed Juncos.

9/24/20 (Marianne Ofenloch) – A young black bear damaged her favorite bird bath after sunset; it was the first time that a bear has shown interest in any of her bird baths.

9/22/20 – Lafayette Twp (Karyn Cichocki) – Had 4 American Kestrels in a field near the intersection of Snover & Decker Roads. In the yard, had a female Purple Finch, many House Finches, Black-capped Chickadee, White-breasted Nuthatch, Tufted Titmouse, and at least 6 Northern Cardinals.

9/21/20 – Wantage Twp (Patty and Pete Hefferan) – were awakened by the loud hooting of a Great Horned Owl in their yard.

9/20/20 – Green Twp (Kevin Cronin) – had 2 Ruby-throated Hummingbirds.

9/20/20 – Sparta Twp (Bill & Connie Warren) – are still seeing a female Ruby-throated Hummingbird at the feeders and visiting the flowers on our deck; no males for about two weeks.

9/20/20 – Portland, PA (Sandy McPhail) had a Ruby-throated Hummingbird at her feeder.

9/19/20 – Liberty Marsh, Wallkill River NWR (Allison Orsi) – reported seeing the Sandhill Cranes.

9/18/20 – Wood Duck Trail, Wallkill River NWR (Karyn Cichocki, Deborah Bifulco) – saw Rose-breasted Grosbeaks, Eastern Phoebe, and painted turtles on anything that was above the water. This week in Lafayette, Karyn had Eastern Bluebird, Common Raven, and both male & female Purple Finch.

9/16/20 – Green Twp (Kevin Cronin) – had a Ruby-throated Hummingbird at feeder.

9/16/20 – Fredon Twp (Lisa Armas) – had a hummingbird in the yard and at feeder today and for the past few days despite this morning’s cold temps.

9/14/20Manchester, NJ (Gail Ewin) – Hummingbirds all day today here in Leisure Village West.

9/14/20 – Sunrise Mountain, Stokes State Forest (Scott Rando) – NW wind was blowing at 10-15 MPH. The count was: 18 Broad-winged Hawks, 2 Sharp-shinned Hawks, 1 Northern Harrier, and 1 American Kestrel. A local adult Bald Eagle was spotted at 7:57 am and another adult was spotted at 12:15 PM. Other raptor species seen were Turkey and Black Vultures and Red-tailed Hawks. Speaking of Red-tailed Hawks, this sighting includes an image sequence of an immature red-tail playing with a stick, dropping it, and grabbing it after entering a vertical dive to make the mid-air grab. Also seen were the following species: Eastern Towhee, Canada Goose, Red-breasted Nuthatch, Blue Jay, American Crow, Common Raven, Carolina Wren….and 2 monarchs.

9/14/20 – Oak Ridge (Alice Piatek) – A pair of Ruby-throated Hummingbirds continue to visit our yard and feeder.

9/14/20 – Wantage Twp (Patty Hefferan) – had one Ruby-throated Hummingbird.

9/14/20 – Hewitt (Russ Edwards) – has had Ruby-throated Hummingbirds at feeders for the past 3 days.

9/13/20 – Lafayette Twp (Karyn Cichocki) – It appears that the Ruby-throated Hummingbirds have moved on. She heard a House Wren, saw Red-eyed Vireo, Cedar Waxwings, Eastern Bluebird, Tufted Titmouse, American Goldfinch, & Northern Cardinal. 

9/13/20  (Marianne Ofenloch) – The Rose-breasted Grosbeaks are enjoying the buffet of jewelweed blossoms and seeds in the yard, as they do here every year. There are 2 species of jewelweed that grow wild in our county: Impatiens capensis (spotted orange flowers) and Impatiens pallida (pale yellow flowers). Both are annuals found in moist, partially shaded areas. If you’re birding our county this month, look for Ruby-throated Hummingbirds, bumblebees, and other pollinators drinking from the blossoms of jewelweed growing along the roads and trails in Paulinskill River Wildlife Management Area/Hyper Humus, Wallkill River National Wildlife Refuge, and many other public lands. The fruit is an elongated green pod that darkens as the seeds within ripen. Once the seeds are “full-size”, the pods will burst when touched, even if the seeds are still green. The seeds are propelled by plant fibers that contract/coil when the pod is opened. The plants reseed themselves quite well by this method, so if you find a patch this year, it’s likely that there will be a new patch in the same place next year as long as soil moisture and other growing conditions remain favorable.

9/12/20 – Culvers Lake (Bob Cappuccio) – Last saw Ruby-throated Hummingbirds at feeders today. He leaves the feeders hanging through October for late migrants. During his 60 years here, he’s had early Oct. hummers several times.

9/12 & 9/13/20 – Sparta Twp (Jill Bainbridge) – had visits lasting twenty minutes or more from this Ruby-throated Hummingbird. 

P9120023 Ruby-throated Female

9/12/20 – Lafayette Twp (Karyn Cichocki) – had a singing Red-eyed Vireo, about 30 House Sparrows, Red-bellied Woodpeckers, Eastern Bluebird, Cedar Waxwings, and Common Raven. Last night, there was a Screech Owl calling from behind our house while the Great Horned Owl that was in our front cherry tree was screeching.

9/8/20 – Paulinskill River Wildlife Management Area/Hyper Humus (Karyn Cichocki, Deborah Bifulco) – saw at least 20 Red-eyed Vireos that were very active feeding in the trees. There was a Magnolia Warbler, 4 Blue-gray Gnatcatchers, a female Rose-breasted Grosbeak, a Pied-billed Grebe, a Belted Kingfisher flying, a Marsh Wren quietly chattering in the reeds, several Double-crested Cormorants, and a female Northern Harrier.

9/7/20 – Sunrise Mountain (Alice Piatek & Alan Gutmore) – had Black Vultures; Turkey Vultures; Broad-winged Hawks (2-3); Common Raven (1); Cedar Waxwings (about 12); Tree Swallows (2); monarch butterflies (1-2) 

9/6/20 – Sunrise Mountain (Alice Piatek & Alan Gutmore) – had Black Vultures, Black-capped Chickadees, and American Tree Sparrows.

9/5/20 – Oak Ridge (Alice Piatek & Alan Gutmore) – had a festival of our usual birds visiting: Tufted Titmice; Black-capped Chickadees; White-breasted Nuthatches; American Goldfinches; Downy Woodpeckers; Red-bellied Woodpeckers; Common Grackles; Blue Jay; Mourning Doves; Northern Cardinals.

9/4/20 -Liberty Loop trail, Wallkill River NWR (Karyn Cichocki) – had several Red-eyed Vireos, a singing Warbling Vireo, female Rose-breasted Grosbeak, Willow Flycatcher, a noisy family of Tufted Titmice, Great Egret, Snowy Egret, Green Heron, Wilson’s Snipe, Least Sandpiper, Black-bellied Plover, Semipalmated Plover, Lesser & Greater Yellowlegs, Northern Harrier, Common Raven, and flocks of migrating Tree and Rough-winged Swallows. Another birder said he had seen a Pectoral Sandpiper. In the yard in Lafayette, the Great-horned Owl is screeching during the night and we have at least 3 bats (little or big brown) flying over the house at dusk. 

8/31/20 – Lafayette Twp (Karyn Cichocki) – had an Ovenbird at our birdbath, a unidentified/confusing fall warbler in a tree, a female Purple Finch, and Ruby-throated Hummingbirds.

8/28/20 – Lafayette & Wallkill River NWR (Karyn Cichocki, Deborah Bifulco) – was surprised to find & identify a Canada Warbler with good color and a decent necklace across its breast (a new yard bird for her). She & Deborah had long looks at a foraging female Black-and-white Warbler a week ago on the Winding Waters Trail in NY.

8/26/20 – Liberty Marsh, Wallkill River NWR (Karyn Cichocki) – Had 100+ Tree Swallows, Great Egrets, Snowy Egret, immature Little Blue Heron, Glossy Ibis, and the continuing Sanderling. There were also Killdeer, Lesser & Greater Yellowlegs, Pectoral, Least & Solitary Sandpipers, & several Green Herons. Blue-winged Teals have joined the large numbers of Mallards and Wood Ducks. A Northern Harrier and Osprey were soaring over the marsh and a Yellow-billed Cuckoo was posing on top of a small tree branch. The pokeberries were being enjoyed by a family of Eastern Kingbirds. Heard Common Gallinule.

8/20/20 – Liberty Marsh, Wallkill River NWR (Marianne Ofenloch) – A juvenile Sanderling was spotted today by 2 former SCBC members as it flew into the south pool of the Liberty Marsh. As far as the club records indicate, this is the first time this species has been seen at the refuge, and at least the 6th time it’s been seen in Sussex County. (The first sighting was at Hyper Humus in 1955.) Not long after the Sanderling was seen, members of the Mearns Bird Club spotted an Olive-sided Flycatcher and some American Pipits in the same area. The immature Little Blue Heron, Snowy Egret, and 4 Glossy Ibis rounded out the rarities at the pool today. Shorebirds have been slowly moving into the refuge again; Least and Semipalmated Sandpipers, Semipalmated Plovers, and both Greater & Lesser Yellowlegs have been keeping company with the Killdeer, Spotted Sandpipers, and Solitary Sandpipers. Bobolink are on the move, as are both Tree and Barn Swallows. Ruby-throated Hummingbirds are dining at the jewelweed and there are Pied-billed Grebes and many Common Gallinules of assorted ages swimming around. Green Herons, Great Egrets, Least Bitterns, and even American Bittern and Black-crowned Night Heron have been seen this week, to say nothing of immature passerines nagging their parents (that includes plenty of Indigo Buntings). The refuge is certainly worthy of a visit!  Please remember safety recommendations and social distancing on the trail.

8/10/20 – Liberty Marsh, Wallkill River NWR (Karyn Cichocki) – Walking along the trail from Owens Station Road, there were Marsh Wrens & Swamp Sparrows calling. There were 4 Glossy Ibis feeding in one of the wet areas along the reeds with a Great Egret (there were a total of 7 in the area) and several adult & immature Common Gallinules. In the south pond along the trail, the continuing Black Tern was at times being harassed by several Tree Swallows. Also seen in the same area: Green Heron, Pied-billed Grebe, Cooper’s Hawk, Eastern Kingbird, and a Common Gallinule hen with very small chicks. Another birder said that he had seen the Sandhill Crane and a Black-bellied Plover the day before.

8/4 & 8/5/20 – Culvers Lake (Marianne Ofenloch) – Big congrats to Fred Weber, who found 3 adult Sooty Terns flying at Culvers Lake on 8/4/20 at the tail-end of the storm. Birders from around the northern half of the state came to see them. A few hours later, former member Al Boyd found 4 more Sooty Terns flying at Swartswood Lake. There were reports of Sooty Terns being seen during and after the storm from many coastal areas along the eastern seaboard, but the county reports were 2 of the few inland reports posted so far. There were 2 reports along the Hudson River in upstate NY, but so far, we appear to have had the only birds visiting a lake. The Sooty Tern is a bird that inhabits & breeds on islands in the tropics & subtropics, in a band that includes the Caribbean/Gulf of Mexico, South America, Hawaii, and other tropical islands in the Atlantic & Pacific oceans. Its non-breeding range is primarily at sea, and they rarely land during non-breeding season. (The terns seen at our 2 lakes remained in flight the entire time they were being observed.) If they are seen near our coasts, it’s most often during hurricanes & tropical storms. The first record of a Sooty Tern in our county was in Sept. 1996 during Hurricane Fran, when an injured bird was found in the Crandon Lakes area. (Editor’s note:  That tern was rehabilitated and released.)  Fred’s find was the first record of free-flying birds in the county. Birders were out looking at both lakes today (8/5/20), but the terns have apparently moved on — hopefully, back home to the ocean!

7/24/20 – Lafayette (Karyn Cichocki) – has another batch of House Finch fledglings and the male House Sparrow showed up this past week with his two youngsters. There are fledgling Blue Jays and the first clutch of House Wrens left the nest box 2 weeks ago. There has been a family of Eastern Kingbirds and last night there was a screeching Great Horned Owl sitting on top of the telephone pole at the end of the driveway. We also had another set of Red-bellied Woodpecker fledglings come to the suet feeder. She has heard Yellow-billed Cuckoo, Great Crested Flycatcher, Eastern Bluebird, Northern Mockingbird, and Yellow-throated Vireo calling. She’s had a female & male Ruby-throated Hummingbird at her flowers.

7-23-20 F hummer a

7/9/20 – Monroe County, PA (Scott Rando) – found this Timber Rattlesnake (appears to be a gravid female) along the Appalachian Trail. It seems these snakes have learned to stay off the trail itself, staying off the beaten path on one side or the other. Also, some Hermit Thrushes, Ovenbirds, and a Scarlet Tanager were heard.  Timber Rattler

7/8/20 – Hewitt (Russ Edwards) – he had the sprinklers watering hanging baskets; it sweeps back and forth and the hummingbird feeders are in its path. A female Ruby-throated Hummingbird came to feed when the water had passed by, but when it returned the bird hovered, moving with the stream of water to stay underneath it.

7/6/20 – Lafayette Twp (Barb Sendelbach) – A male Rose-breasted Grosbeak is coming in the evenings to fill up on sunflower seed. The Great Crested Flycatchers did not return to the driveway box they used last year. Instead, they are using the owl box which housed a family of squirrels in the spring. The female Eastern Bluebird is sitting on her second clutch of eggs. There are still only male Ruby-throated Hummingbirds in the yard. Earlier this week, three nights in a row, three juvenile Barred Owls and one adult were in the area. On the third day the three juveniles came into the yard. Two weeks ago, we had a bobcat stop in the yard to drink from the pond and do some hunting. That was our first yard sighting; our second sighting in 2020 so far.  We had a large adult cross in front of us on Route 15 in Sparta early one morning in March.

7/1/20 – Lafayette Twp (Karyn Cichocki) – the House Wrens are busy feeding noisy chicks in the Wren box. She’s also had Great Crested Flycatcher, Eastern Phoebe, Yellow-throated Vireo, Brown Thrasher,  and Green Herons. The immature Great Horned Owls have been screeching in the evenings.

6/26/20 – Hyper Humus-Paulinskill Wildlife Management Area (Tim Clauss) – Around 7 PM, we saw a Virginia Rail with two chicks in the marshy area on the right near pond #4 (on the map).

6/25/20 – John Dryden Kuser Memorial Natural Area-High Point State Park (Karyn Cichocki, Sandy McPhail) – walked the bog trail and had 36 species.  Highlights were seeing two different pairs of Yellow-bellied Sapsuckers feeding young in their nest holes & great looks at singing male Black-throated Green, Black-and-White, and Chestnut-sided Warblers. They also heard American Redstart and Prairie Warblers singing.  

6/23/20 – Owens Station & Liberty Loop/Wallkill River NWR (Karyn Cichocki, Deborah Bifulco) –  there were a number of Common Gallinule calling; we saw 4 singles and one pair had 8 young.  A female Wood Duck had 9 ducklings. Two Least Bitterns were seen flying and we heard Virginia Rail, Red-eyed, Warbling & Yellow-throated Vireos, Marsh Wren & Swamp Sparrow calling.  We had a total of 36 species.Common Gallinule wih young b

6/20/20 – Culvers Lake (Fred Weber) – Can see Baltimore Oriole nest from patio through scope; 2 young visible. Both adults look like immature males (black head and throat with brown spotting, orange shoulder patch). One’s a bit darker, probably the male. I see another imm. male type and a full adult male at bird bath. No sources show females looking like imm. males.

6/16/20 – Hyper Humus-Paulinskill Wildlife Management Area (Karyn Cichocki, Deborah Bifulco) – had a Least Bittern, Green Heron, a Common Gallinule, & heard a Virginia Rail calling. Other birds seen or heard of interest: Wood Duck, Marsh Wren, Red-eyed, Yellow-throated & Warbling Vireos, Willow Flycatcher, Ovenbird, Wood Thrush, & Eastern Wood-Pewee.

6/15/20 – Lafayette Twp (Karyn Cichocki) – had a Brown Thrasher in the yard. Also had Cedar Waxwings and a Common Raven calling from the woods.

6/12/20 – J. Dryden Kuser Memorial Natural Area/High Point State Park & Wallkill River NWR (Donna and Don Traylor) – found a Yellow-bellied Sapsucker nest. Warblers heard or seen included: Ovenbird, Black-throated Blue, American Redstart, Black-and-White, Blackburnian, Northern Waterthrush, and Prairie. There were also Red-eyed Vireos, close views of both male & female Scarlet Tanagers, & Veery calling. Later, they heard Alder Flycatcher, Indigo Bunting and Yellow-throated Vireo at the Wallkill River NWR.  

6/10/20 – Sparta Twp (Bill & Connie Warren) – has Great-crested Flycatchers nesting in a dead tree next to their house. They have nested in a Pileated Woodpecker hole. The photo was taken through his scope by holding his phone to the eyepiece.  IMG_2675

6/9 Lafayette – At 11am this morning I had a Bobolink calling from the field diagonally across from our house, which would be 1 mile up from Rte 15 on Beaver Run Rd.  When we first moved into the house we had them show up around the 15th of May, but as the area built up we would have less and less with the final one appearing about 4yrs ago.  What a joy to once again hear that call from the house.  This is also the first year that I haven’t heard the Swamp Sparrows calling from the wet area down the street.

In the yard this past week we have had Eastern Phoebe, Great-crested Flycatcher, Red-eyed and Yellow-throated Vireos and Baltimore Orioles.  The Downy & Red-bellied Woodpeckers, Northern Cardinals & House Finches are all feeding their fledglings, which are a noisy bunch.  Karyn Cichocki

6/13/20 – Lafayette Twp (Karyn Cichocki) – had a singing Yellow-throated Vireo in the yard.

5/25/20 – Lafayette Twp (Karyn Cichocki) – had a Great-crested Flycatcher, a pair of Baltimore Orioles, Red-eyed Vireo, American Redstart, Black-and-White Warbler, at least 3 Gray Catbirds, a female Ruby-throated Hummingbird, and 5 Common Ravens flew over the house.

5/22/20 – Hainesville Wildlife Management Area & High Point SP – had a few Blackpoll Warblers at Hainesville; at High point, had her first-of-season Eastern Wood-Pewees of the season & heard Veery, Wood Thrush, & Hermit Thrush singing.

5/24/20 – Jefferson Twp (Alice Piatek & Alan Gutmore) – At Mahlon Dickerson’s Old Ski Bowl trails, we saw Baltimore Oriole, American Redstart, American Robin, Pine Warbler, Gray Catbird, American Crow, Turkey Vulture, Song Sparrow, Northern Flicker, and Pileated Woodpecker.  We heard but did not see Northern Cardinal, Rose-breasted Grosbeak, and a hawk.

5/19/20 – J. Dryden Kuser Memorial Natural Area/High Point State Park (Karyn Cichocki) – had Blackburnian and Prairie Warblers, Ruffed Grouse, and startled a Great-horned Owl that had been perched along the board walk.

5/18/20 – Lafayette Twp (Karyn Cichocki) had an American Redstart and a Baltimore Oriole singing.  The Tree & Barn Swallows have returned to the area and the Purple Martins have returned to their colony nest boxes on Beaver Run Road just before the elementary school.

5/17/20 – Jefferson Twp (Alice Piatek & Alan Gutmore) – At Mahlon Dickerson’s Old Ski Bowl trails:
American Tree Sparrow, American Redstart, Yellow Warbler, Pine Warbler, Warbling Vireo, American Robin, Gray Catbird, Northern Cardinal (heard, not seen), Turkey Vulture, American Crow. In the wetlands off Ridge Rd. in Jefferson, we had Red-winged Blackbirds.

5/17/20 – J. Dryden Kuser Memorial Natural Area/High Point State Park (Karyn Cichocki & 2 other SCBC members) – Saw many American Redstarts and Black-and-white Warblers, Blackburnian Warbler, & nesting Yellow-bellied Sapsuckers. We had a total of 31 species and 1 unidentified thrush that we couldn’t see well enough to get a positive id and could have been a Hermit Thrush.

5/15/20 – Hyper Humus (Matt Skalla) – Found a Black Tern today along shore of pond #2.

Black Tern
5/15/20 – Lafayette Twp (Karyn Cichocki) – had an Eastern Phoebe on the nest platform her husband built last year. A House Wren has been pulling nesting material from the Carolina Wren box. Also had a Brown Thrasher, several Baltimore Orioles, and a White-crowned Sparrow (there were 6 on Saturday).

5/14/20 – Hainesville Wildlife Management Area (Karyn Cichocki) – spent 3 hrs and had 49 species just walking around the parking lots and down the street a bit. Warblers: Common Yellowthroat, American Redstart, Black-throated Blue, Black-throated Green, Blackpoll, Black-and-white, Yellow-rumped, Cape May, Yellow, Canada, Hooded, & Wilson’s. Vireos: Red-eyed, Warbling, Blue-headed, Yellow-throated, and possible Philadelphia

5/11/20 – Frankford Twp (Donna Traylor) – had 1 female & 3 male Rose-breasted Grosbeaks at the feeder.

5/11/20 – Millbrook Village/Watergate (Warren Co) & Sussex Co sites (Karyn Cichocki) – A total of 54 species were seen or heard.  Highlight of the day was a great look at a Magnolia Warbler and Swainson’s Thrush. Millbrook/Watergate – Canada Geese, Mallard, Mourning Dove, Red-tailed Hawk, Red-bellied Woodpecker, Downy Woodpecker, Northern Flicker, Least Flycatcher, Blue Jay, Tree & Barn Swallows, House & Carolina Wrens, Blue-gray Gnatcatcher, Veery, Swainson’s Thrush, Wood Thrush, American Robin, Gray Catbird, American Goldfinch, Eastern Towhee, Chipping & Song Sparrows, Orchard & Baltimore Orioles, Red-winged Blackbird, Brown-headed Cowbird, Common Grackle, Ovenbird, Common Yellowthroat, American Redstart, Northern Parula, Black and White, Hooded, Magnolia, Yellow, Pine, & Yellow-rumped Warblers, Northern Cardinal, and Rose-breasted Grosbeak. Old Mine Road – Walpack – Wild Turkey, Turkey Vulture, Great-crested Flycatcher, Eastern Kingbird, American Crow, Field Sparrow. Stokes State Forest & High Point State Park – Yellow-bellied Sapsucker, Eastern Phoebe, Vireos: Yellow-throated, Blue-headed & Red-eyed, Black-capped Chickadee, White-breasted Nuthatch, Swamp Sparrow

5/11/20 – Lafayette Twp (Karyn Cichocki) – continues to have White-crowned Sparrows, plus White-throated Sparrows. The American Robins have 4 eggs in their nest.

5/11/20 – Wantage Twp (Giselle Smisko) – Wood Ducklings have been hatching in the last week. Mallard ducklings and Canada Goose goslings are also appearing. If anyone comes across a duckling or gosling with no family in sight, please contact the Avian Wildlife Center immediately at (973) 702-1957. The young bird should be kept warm with a towel to nestle into and handling should be kept to a minimum.

5/10/20 – Jefferson Twp (Alice Piatek & Alan Gutmore) – At Mahlon Dickerson’s Old Ski Bowl trails: we hit the mother lode: Turkey Vultures – 4, Red-tailed Hawk – 1, Bald Eagle – 1, Northern Flicker – 1, Great Blue Heron – 1, American Robins – 4, Gray Catbirds – 2, Scarlet Tanager – 1, Baltimore Oriole – 1, Rose-breasted Grosbeak – 1, Cerulean Warbler – 1, Black-and-White Warbler – 2, Magnolia Warbler – 1, Chipping Sparrows – 2, Ruby-throated Hummingbird – 1, American Redstart – heard but not seen, Northern Cardinals – heard but not seen, Red-winged Blackbird – 1 (in the wetland area off Ridge Rd. Jefferson), Wild Turkeys – 2 (on Berkshire Valley Rd. Jefferson)

5/10/20 – Frankford Twp (Donna Traylor) – Today we added a new species to our yard list – Canada Warbler!

5/8/20 – Culvers Lake yard (Fred Weber) – 7 Rose-breasted Grosbeaks (4 males, 3 females), 2 male Baltimore Orioles, pair of Gray Catbirds, & 2 male Scarlet Tanagers passed through. Only warbler was a Common Yellowthroat skulking low. 10 Cedar Waxwings high in oaks. No warblers up there.

5/8/20 – Sussex Branch Trail in Andover Twp (Wade and Sharon Wander) – observed a Common Raven nest on a tower along the utility line right-of-way. The nest was built behind a large solar panel which provides some protection from weather and potential avian predators. The attached photo shows 1 of at least 2 fledglings. One can identify it as a young bird based on its colorful gape flange that is barely visible just below the eye. Raven

5/7/20 – Oak Ridge (Alice Piatek) – observed 3 Red-tailed Hawks calling and circling above her home; also had her first visit by a Ruby-throated Hummingbird.

5/7/20 – Sparta & Wantage Twps (Karyn Cichocki) – Mary Clauss told her about a Bald Eagle nest at Lake Mohawk; there was an adult in the tree and a youngster in the nest. The nest in Wantage also has one chick that looks like it will also fledge in a couple of weeks.

Week of 5/7/20 – Sussex County sites (Marianne Ofenloch) – Vireos, warblers, shorebirds, and other migrants have been making appearances. Nashville Warblers seem to be widespread this week; were seen at Hyper Humus, Hainesville Wildlife Management Area, and in her yard, and other birders have seen them in Wawayanda State Park, Walpack, & Sparta. Had a first-year male Orchard Oriole on Tuesday and an adult male on Wednesday foraging in the same tree in my yard; new yard species. An Orange-crowned Warbler was among the assortment of other warblers moving through her yard on Weds morning. An adult White-crowned Sparrow arrived today. There was a male Indigo Bunting at Hyper Humus, male Black-throated Blue & Black-throated Green Warblers in Stokes SF & Walpack, male Scarlet Tanagers in Stokes and High Point, Baltimore Orioles (both sexes) everywhere, Yellow-throated Vireos as well as Blackburnian and Yellow Warblers… a veritable rainbow of birds all over the county! There was a family of Mute Swans at Hyper Humus; the cygnets were very recently hatched. The most unusual sighting was a group of swallows (mostly Northern Rough-winged plus a Barn Swallow) feeding on goose poop, or something inside it, in the middle of the road in Walpack.

5/3/20 – Stokes SF & Frankford Twp yard (Donna and Don Traylor) – had about 45 species in Stokes; highlights included Yellow-throated Vireo, 12 species of warblers (Black-throated Blue, Cerulean, Yellow, American Redstart, Hooded, Black-and-White, Louisiana Waterthrush, Prairie, and Worm-eating among them), Scarlet Tanager, Wood Thrush, Veery, Indigo Bunting, Rose-breasted Grosbeak, Broad-winged Hawk, Chimney Swift, and Least Flycatcher. At home, they watched both male and female Ruby-throated Hummingbirds, Rose-breasted Grosbeak, Wood Thrush, female Pileated Woodpecker coming to the suet, House Wren, Wood Ducks, and Great-crested Flycatcher.

5/6/20 – Walpack Twp (Tommy Sudol) – saw a Kentucky Warbler in the same spot as last year, about 1/4 mile north of the barn/farm house on Walpack-Flatbrook Rd.

5/5/20 – Wantage Twp (Giselle Smisko) – numerous Gray Catbirds calling, 1 female & 2 male Rose-breasted Grobeaks at the feeder, and a tiger swallowtail. Spotted a couple of returning Chimney Swifts. Nestlings so far include numerous Mourning Doves, American Robin, Song Sparrow, Carolina Wrens, Mallard (eggs), and Great Horned Owlet. A word of warning, if you have not used your car in the last week or so, check under the hood for nesting birds. We received two nests from vehicles–the wrens and a nest of House Sparrows.

5/5/20 – Fredon Twp (Marge Barrett and Joe Burgiel) – heard one Bobolink in the lower part of Phil Hardin Road and saw one on a wire at the upper part of Phil Hardin Road.

5/5/20 – Lafayette Twp (Karyn Cichocki) – White-crowned Sparrows are singing; also heard a Great-crested Flycatcher calling and a Baltimore Oriole singing. A Blue-gray Gnatcatcher was seen.

5/4/20 – Lafayette Twp (Matt Skalla) – Had a White Eyed Vireo along the Sussex Branch Trail near Warbasse Junction.

5/4/20 – Allamuchy Twp/Warren Co. (Charlie Fineran) – seeing some Great Blue Herons working the drainage ditches in the mucklands off Young’s Island Road and have also seen them flying overhead going to and fro from their Pequest Rookery in the Pequest River riparian area. The Barn Swallows are back; they have nests in some of the small abandoned sheds in the fields. Multiple sightings of a resident Red-tailed Hawk, a few American Kestrels, a Cooper’s Hawk, and  Turkey and Black Vultures, plus some Wood Ducks and Mallards swimming around the drainage ditches. The Mute Swans on Allamuchy Pond have 6 cygnets.

5/4/20 – Lafayette Twp (Barb Sendelbach) – The weekend’s warmth brought pollinators, including 6 species of butterflies and the first luna moth of the season, plus more spring birds. New arrivals were Gray Catbirds, male Ruby-throated Hummingbirds, Black-and-White Warbler, Brown Thrasher, Wood Thrush, Great Crested Flycatcher, a female Rose-breasted Grosbeak, Fish Crows calling, & severalCommon Ravens. One Dark-eyed Junco and at least a half a dozen White-throated Sparrows remain.


5/3/20 – Jefferson Twp (Alice Piatek & Alan Gutmore) – At Mahlon Dickerson’s Old Ski Bowl trails: observed a Turkey Vulture, Eastern Towhee, Northern Cardinal, American Robin, Gray Catbird, American Tree Sparrow, Ruby-crowned Kinglet, American Goldfinch, and (according to our bird guide) American Redstart and Black-and-White Warbler.

5/3/20 – Sussex & Warren Co. sites (Karyn Cichocki) Stokes SF & Millbrook Village/Watergate – Lots of Ovenbirds and Red-eyed Vireos, Least Flycatcher, Rose-breasted Grosbeak, Northern Parula; Walpack – Eastern Phoebe, Baltimore Oriole, Field & Chipping Sparrows, & House Wren. Lafayette yard – had a singing Wood Thrush.

5/3/20 – Sparta Twp (Jill Bainbridge) – male and female Rose-breasted Grosbeak.

5/3/20 – Wantage Twp (Allison Orsi) – heard & then saw her first-of-year Baltimore Oriole; also saw American Redstart and the first Yellow Warbler in my yard.

5/3/20 – Andover Twp (Merle and Roger Tanis) – had an Osprey circling low over the pond…a number of times it dove for fish but was always unsuccessful. Have also had a pair of Wood Ducks and a very active Great Blue Heron, Rose-breasted Grosbeak, & numerous American Goldfinches. Hepatica and Rue Anemone are still in bloom on the forest floor, spring peepers are super vocal right now, heard our first bullfrog of the season. Yesterday, next to the Sussex Branch Trail, we had a mini-wave of migrants – Palm Warblers, Yellow-rumped Warblers, Blue-gray Gnatcatchers, and a local group of Eastern Bluebirds.

5/3/20 – Fredon Twp (Wade Wander) – A few weeks ago, we posted a photo of an adult Great Horned Owl on a nest very near our house. The larger of the two owlets hatched first and is probably a female. One of the adults was nearby so I did not linger. The photo was taken about 100 feet from the nest. (NOTE: Do not seek/approach owl nests or roosting owls as that can disturb them or disrupt their nesting/development.)


5/2/20 – Lafayette Twp (Karyn Cichocki) – In the yard, had a Brown Thrasher singing from the top of a tree and a Yellow-rumped Warbler picking at the buds on another tree. Saw & heard 2 Gray Catbirds and a House Wren. At Hyper Humus, highlights were Warbling Vireo, Yellow & Yellow-rumped Warblers, Blue-gray Gnatcatcher, Baltimore & Orchard Orioles, Eastern Kingbird, Brown Thrasher, Marsh Wren, Common Gallinule, Cooper’s Hawk, & Ruby-throated Hummingbird. Also saw tiger swallowtail, cabbage white & clouded sulphur butterflies.

5/2/20 – Hamburg (Phil Winiecki) – First Rose-breasted Grosbeak of the season.IMG_2895 (002)

5/1/20 – Dingmans Ferry, PA (Jack Padalino) – first male Rose-breasted Grosbeak at the feeders.

5/1/20 – Lafayette Twp (Karyn Cichocki) – saw a male American Kestrel on Decker Road near the nest box and a female kestrel on Snover Road near a barn.

5/1/20 – Frankford Twp (Jeff Risdon) – sent pictures of a Rose-breasted Grosbeak and Indigo Bunting in his yard.

5/1/20 – Sparta Twp (Connie & Bill Warren) – had first-of-season male Rose-breasted Grosbeak.

5/1/20 – Frankford Twp (Donna Traylor) – had Blue-gray Gnatcatcher, male Rose-breasted Grosbeak, Black-and-White Warbler, female Eastern Towhee (the male has been present for about a week), Ruby-crowned Kinglet, Wood Duck exiting the box, Eastern Bluebird male checking out a box, and Gray Catbird.

4/30 – Lafayette Twp (Karyn Cichocki) – had a male Ruby-throated Hummingbird visiting the feeder at about 7 p.m.

4/30 – Dingmans Ferry, PA (Jack Padalino) had a Ruby-crowned Kinglet at his feeders in the afternoon.

4/30 – Andover Twp (Merle & Roger Tanis) – were delighted to see a beautiful male Rose-breasted Grosbeak on their feeder. Same first date as 2019: 30 April.

4/30 – Lafayette Twp (Barbara Sendelbach) – still had about a dozen White-throated Sparrows and two Dark-eyed Juncos. The Eastern Bluebirds started nest building weeks ago, but then House Sparrows showed interest. They disappeared and the Black-capped Chickadees added to the nest. She hasn’t seen any activity this week. The Carolina Wrens have a nest in the roosting pocket by the front door. American Goldfinch numbers have increased in recent weeks (22 at one point). The numbers vary depending on the time of day. The House Finches have pretty much disappeared. New visitors since last week have been Rose-breasted Grosbeak, Chipping Sparrows, and Blue-gray Gnatcatcher.

4/29 (Marianne Ofenloch) – Species seen over the last few days in the Montague area have included Bonaparte’s Gull in breeding plumage, Merlin, Blue-headed Vireo, Louisiana Waterthrush, Yellow-rumped and Yellow Warblers, Savannah Sparrows, and 2 male Rose-breasted Grosbeaks.

4/29 – Culvers Lake (Lee and Terry McQuillin) – had 2 Ruby-throated Hummingbirds less than five minutes after hanging the feeders. Over the last few days, they’ve also had multiple juvenile Bald Eagles, a Wood Duck pair, a Common Loon, Double-crested Cormorants, families of Buffleheads, Hooded Mergansers, and an Osprey.

4/29 – Andover Twp (Deborah Bifulco) – had her first Gray Catbird of the season, her first glimpse of a male Red-breasted Grosbeak, American Goldfinches (as many as 18-20), a nesting pair of Chipping Sparrows, Northern Cardinals, and Mourning Doves. Signs of courtship are abundant, with Northern Cardinals, Blue Jays, Carolina Wrens, and Tufted Titmice feeding each other. There are 8 Black-capped Chickadee eggs in one of the nest boxes and mom is brooding.

4/28 – Culvers Lake (Fred Weber) – A red fox makes frequent visits to feeding area. Saw it catch a Mourning Dove last week. Had Brown Thrasher (third ever) at feeder (on ground).

4/28 – various Warren Co. & Sussex Co. sites (Karyn Cichocki) – Walked from Millbrook Village to Watergate then back to the village via Old Mine Road; had Northern Parula, Pine & Black-and-white Warblers, Louisiana Waterthrush, Hermit Thrush, Blue-gray Gnatcatcher, Ruby-crowned Kinglet, Eastern Towhee, 2 singing Brown Thrashers, and Red-shouldered Hawk were some of the highlights.

4/27 – Flanders, Morris Co. (Bill and April McDaniel) – had a pair of Northern Flickers plus at least one other that remained more distant, a flock of American Goldfinches, a pair of Chipping Sparrows and a pair of Tufted Titmice nesting in the shrubs near the house, a pair of House Finches, a Red-tailed Hawk, 2 Mourning Doves, and both Downy and Pileated Woodpeckers.

4/27 – Frankford & Wantage Twps (Donna and Don Traylor) – at Rockport Marsh on CR 651 (Unionville Road) in Wantage, had Pied-billed Grebe, Wood Duck, Barn Swallow, and Belted Kingfisher. At Culvers Lake, there were Buffleheads, Tree Swallows, and 14 Common Loons. Havendale Farm on Lewisburg Road in Wantage had a mixed blackbird flock that included some Rusty Blackbirds. On Roy Road in Frankford, we had 3 American Kestrels. Also had two Red-tailed Hawk nests (one on Lott Road in Wantage, the second on Lusscroft Road in Wantage). In the yard, had over 30 American Goldfinches, a male Ruby-throated Hummingbird, and Song, Chipping, White-throated, Field and Swamps Sparrows. Don saw an Eastern Screech Owl near our deck in the evening.

4/27 – Culvers Lake (Fred Weber) – had 12 Bonaparte’s Gulls.

4/25 – Warwick, NY (Russ Edwards) – had American Robin, Red-winged Blackbird, European Starling, American Crow, Common Grackle, Northern Mockingbird, Rock Pigeon, Song Sparrow, House Sparrow, Turkey Vulture, Red-tailed Hawk, Eastern Bluebird, Palm Warbler, Yellow-rumped Warbler, Tree Swallow, Barn Swallow, and two ticks (be careful out there)

4/25 – Lafayette Twp (Karyn Cichocki) – At Hyper Humus, had a family of Canada Geese, 2 Pied-billed Grebes, 3 Double-crested Cormorants, 4 Field Sparrows, and a Golden-crowned Kinglet. The Bald Eagle nest was still intact. One adult was on the nest and another was flying around; there was also an immature bird. In the yard, had 6 male American Goldfinches that are fully molted, and have heard a Yellow-rumped Warbler and Field Sparrows singing. There are 4 red squirrels, some at the feeders.

4/22 – Oak Ridge (Alice Piatek and Alan Gutmore) – had a Red-tailed Hawk, an American Tree Sparrow, and a few Dark-eyed Juncos still visiting.

4/22 – Fredon Twp (Wade and Sharon Wander) – spotted a Pine Siskin attempting to hide among the many American Goldfinches and House Finches at their feeding station.

4/22 – Wantage Twp (Patty and Pete Hefferan) – observed bumblebees crawling all over the flowering trees. On the lawn were 3 plump American Robins digging for worms. They saw a Broad-winged Hawk balanced on a wire on CR 565.

4/22 – Montague Twp (Marianne Ofenloch) – had a House Wren perched & singing in a tree on Sunday, a Field Sparrow singing, slowly opening blossoms on the rhododendrons and crab apple trees, courtship displays among the year-round resident birds, and more butterflies and dragonflies on each warm day. Happy Earth Day to everyone!

4/19 – Lafayette Twp (Karyn Cichocki) – her husband, Don, noticed this pile of Northern Flicker feathers under a dogwood tree. Most of the American Goldfinches are gone and the American Robins have been getting nice big fat worms from the front lawn as well as collecting nesting material.4-19-20 Northern Flicker feathers a

4/18 – Byram Twp (Steve Fitzsimmons) – saw 3 Yellow-rumped Warblers at my suet feeder; it was the first time he ever saw them at a feeder.

4/18 – Hardyston Twp (Ken Witkowski) –  Besides the usual feeder birds, there was a flock of 20+ Rusty Blackbirds in his yard, as well as a Dark-eyed Junco and a pair of nesting Red-shouldered Hawks.

4/17 – Fredon Twp (Wade and Sharon Wander) – observed a male Northern Flicker methodically probing the soil between the pavers on this patio. Much of the diet consists of ants. The Great Horned Owls are raising 2 young. We also observed a Red-shouldered Hawk near our house with a bullfrog in its talons.


4/16 – Lafayette Twp (Karyn Cichocki) – a pair of Red-bellied Woodpeckers have been chasing each other and mating in a cedar tree (a Downy Woodpecker is also in this photo).

4-15-20 Downy M-F Red-bellied

4/16 – Wantage Twp (Allison Orsi) – had a singing Brown Thrasher, a Ruby-crowned Kinglet, and a pair of Palm Warblers, along with a Chipping Sparrow at the feeder.4/16 Karyn Cichocki- Ruby-crowned Kinglet has been singing & feeding in our Cedar trees for the last 2 days.

4/14 – Oak Ridge (Alice Piatek & Alan Gutmore) – continue to have Dark-eyed Juncos visiting. Other visitors include Common Grackles, Blue Jays, Northern Cardinals, White-throated Sparrows, House Sparrows, House Finches, American Goldfinches, Black-capped Chickadees, Tufted Titmice, and Downy, Hairy & Red-bellied Woodpeckers.

4/13 – Montague & Frankford Twps (Marianne Ofenloch) – Birds and even butterflies have begun to migrate through our area once again. Returning avian migrants seen in the Montague area over the last week have included Osprey, Broad-winged Hawk, Northern Rough-winged Swallow, Barn Swallow, Ruby-crowned Kinglet, Blue-gray Gnatcatcher, Chipping Sparrow, Field Sparrow, and Palm Warbler. After months of not seeing any Wild Turkeys, she finally spotted displaying gobblers, though numbers of toms & hens are far lower than in past years. Cabbage white and spring azure butterflies have returned. The first pickerel frog was calling and daffodil, periwinkle, & twin-leaf flowers are blooming everywhere. On a much more somber note, I am saddened to share that the Bald Eagle nest I monitor in the Culvers Lake area has failed this year. The eggs were due to hatch over the last week, and while I can’t confirm if they hatched or not before the chicks died, I can confirm that they didn’t survive based on the parents not tending the nest for two consecutive days. Last year, one of the two chicks died within a few weeks of hatching, so I’m not sure if these are signs of a problem with the eagles and/or the environment around them. I know that some of our members like to be updated on the nest status, but I hate to have to share such sad news. Hopefully, the chicks in the other county nests will fare better this year.

4/13 – Frankford Twp (Donna and Don Traylor) – Chipping Sparrow showed up a week ago and is hanging out with Song and White-throated Sparrows. Three Dark-eyed Juncos are still present. The first Eastern Phoebe arrived on 4/8, which is two days past a previous late date. Also have a pair of Wood Ducks, a pair of White-breasted Nuthatches that have moved into the Eastern Screech-Owl box, a Barred Owl calling, and a Pileated Woodpecker (female) at the suet.

4/12 – Sussex Co. sites (Wade and Sharon Wander) – The Great Horned Owl nest near our house has one fairly large nestling. The Bald Eagle nest at Little Swartswood has 2 large nestlings. Blue-gray Gnatcatcher (Fredon Twp) and Broad-winged Hawk (Dark Moon Preserve in Green Twp) seen today.

4/11 – Lafayette Twp (Karyn Cichocki) – had 2 Common Ravens flying around the neighborhood, chasing one another and calling back and forth, plus a flock of about 15 Cedar Waxwings, 2 Dark-eyed Juncos, and American Goldfinches.

4/9 – Culvers Lake (Fred Weber) – had 4 Greater Scaup in the morning, 6 Lesser Scaup in the evening, 15 Common Loons, and at least 80 American Goldfinches in my yard this afternoon.

4/9 – Andover Twp (Deborah Bifulco) – still has a few Dark-eyed Juncos; waves of White-throated Sparrows come through every day. American Goldfinch numbers continue to be higher than usual, with a dozen or more the norm. Heard and saw the first Chipping Sparrows. The Black-capped Chickadees are investigating the nest boxes. This is the  fourth spring that a group of male Red-winged Blackbirds have shown up in the yard, including one with a noticeable patch of white feathers on its side. The biggest surprise this week was a big, fresh black swallowtail!

4/11 – Lafayette Twp (Karyn Cichocki) – a Palm Warbler was feeding on driveway.

4/8 – Frankford Twp (Lynn Groves-Lussier) – had an Eastern Whip-poor-will calling.

4/7 – Fredon Twp (Wade and Sharon Wander) – The nest built by Red-shouldered Hawks last year was usurped this year by Great Horned Owls. We have seen the cotton-top head of one small chick occasionally bobbing up and down above the rim of the nest and have watched it wolf down some morsels offered by its mother. We can observe the nest through a spotting scope. Because the nest tree is in a ravine, the nest is at eye level for us. The photo was taken at a distance of about 100 feet.We also found a red phase Eastern Screech-Owl in a tree hole near our house.Ow2OW1

4/7 – Lafayette Twp (Karyn Cichocki) – her Dark-eyed Juncos have left her yard.

4/6 – Lafayette Twp (Karyn Cichocki) – Heard a Chipping Sparrow singing from a neighbor’s yard.

4/5 – Wallkill River National Wildlife Refuge (Giselle Smisko) – had a flock of at least 50 Rusty Blackbirds between Owens Station & the Liberty marsh. The American toads were calling. There was a pair of Pied-billed Grebes in the south pool.

4/5 – Wallkill River NWR & Lafayette Twp (Karyn Cichocki) – had Song, White-throated, & Swamp Sparrows, a flock of 50+ female Red-winged Blackbirds, 20+ Rusty Blackbirds, Green-winged Teal, Ring-necked Duck, American Coot, Great Blue Heron, and an American Kestrel. In the yard, had a male Northern Flicker, Eastern Phoebe, a pair of Eastern Bluebirds, and heard a Field Sparrow calling.

4/8 – Culvers Lake (Fred Weber) – 6 Wilson’s Snipe at the Culver Causeway on both sides of Mute Swan nest. 4 female Greater Scaup, about 100 Buffleheads, and a female Red-breasted Merganser were on the lake.

4/4 – Sparta Twp (Bill Warren) – on Lake Mohawk, had lots of Bufflehead, 5 Ring- necked Ducks near the bridge to the island, some Herring Gulls (60-75), and it looked like a few black-backed gull (sp) were among them.

4/4 – Wantage & Frankford Twps (Patty and Pete Hefferan) – Saw a Bald Eagle while driving on CR 565 and a Peregrine Falcon perched on a telephone pole over Papakating Creek.

4/3 – Culvers Lake and Lafayette Twp (Karyn Cichocki) – by Culver Causeway, drake Green-winged Teal near Mute Swan nest; on Culvers Lake, Buffleheads and Common Loon. Small groups of drake Ring-necked Ducks were on several small ponds in the area. At home, American Goldfinches in various stages of breeding plumage and White-throated Sparrows in breeding plumage.

4/2 -Wawayanda State Park (Russ Edwards) – Cooper’s Hawk over beach parking lot flying south, Eastern Phoebe along main park road. Also Canada Geese, Mallards, Hairy Woodpecker, Tufted Titmice, American Robin, Red-winged Blackbird.

4/1 – Frankford Twp (Fred Weber) – 2 White-crowned Sparrows along Meyer Rd. past top of hill by narrow grassy pond.

4/1 – Lafayette Twp (Karyn Cichocki) – had a flock of Cedar Waxwings either feeding or drinking from the maple flowers & cedar branches. The pairs of Red-bellied and Downy Woodpeckers are chasing each other and the male House Finches and Northern Cardinals are feeding their lady friends.

4/1 – Frankford Twp (Donna and Don Traylor) – A male Purple Finch frequented our sunflower feeder.

3/31 – Frankford Twp (Donna and Don Traylor) – had Fox Sparrow and a male Eastern Towhee.

3/27 – Culvers Lake (Fred Weber) – Breeding plumage Common Loon fairly close, called twice, flew across lake, belly landing. Two pairs of Long-tailed Ducks; 1 male and both females were in mostly breeding plumage. About 40 Buffleheads and a Red-breasted Merganser hen.

3/27 – Hyper Humus (Karyn Cichocki) – had several pairs of Green-winged Teal, American Black Ducks, Wood Ducks, a Gadwall, and a pair of American Wigeons. Also had a Belted Kingfisher & a female Red-winged Blackbird.

3/27 – Andover Twp (Deborah Bifulco) – had first Eastern Phoebe of the year singing in the yard. The first warbler of the season – a Pine Warbler – paid several visits to both the suet and sunflower chip feeders. Also had American Robins, American Goldfinches, House Finches, Tufted Titmice, Black-capped Chickadees, Dark-eyed Juncos, Northern Cardinals, White-throated Sparrows, male Red-winged Blackbirds, Common Grackle, and Brown-headed Cowbird.Pine Warbler

3/27 – Wantage Twp (Patty and Pete Hefferan) – had two pairs of Common Mergansers and a Great Blue Heron. The skunk cabbage is growing.

3/27 – Frankford Twp (Donna and Don Traylor) – At least four American Woodcocks were peenting and displaying this evening on Mattison Reservoir Road.

3/26 -Wawayanda State Park (Russ Edwards) – had an adult Bald Eagle over Lake Wawayanda, Great Blue Heron, 3 Eastern Phoebes, and 4 painted turtles.

3/26 – Lafayette Twp (Karyn Cichocki) – had an immature Bald Eagle, heard Eastern Phoebe, Killdeer, & Common Raven calling in the neighborhood. Also heard the first neighborhood spring peepers.

3/26 – Culvers Lake (Fred Weber) – a pair of Long-tailed Ducks coming into breeding plumage and 3 Red-breasted Mergansers.

3/22 – Lafayette Twp (Karyn Cichocki) – had about 15 American Robins and a pair of Brown-headed Cowbirds.

3/21 – Wallkill River NWR (Giselle Smisko) – had a flock of at least 12 Rusty Blackbirds next to the trail going to Owens Station. Also had Northern Shoveler, Northern Pintail, Ring-necked Duck, Green-winged Teal, American Black Duck, Mallard, Mute Swan on a nest, Fish Crow, Tree Swallow, Canada Goose, Song Sparrow, calling spring peepers, and the Mid-Atlantic coast leopard frog….and a lot of people practicing social distancing with at least a Turkey Vulture’s wingspan of separation.

3/21 – Culvers Lake (Fred Weber) – 24 Horned Grebes (18 in one group) in varying degrees of breeding plumage. 5 female Red-breasted Mergansers, 4 Long-tailed Ducks, 2 Pied-billed Grebes.

3/21 – Hyper Humus (Karyn Cichocki) – Saw the first Tree Swallows of the season. There were a couple of American Black Ducks and several pairs of Common Mergansers along with all the Mute Swans, Canada Geese, and Mallards. A few spring peepers were calling. The Bald Eagles have finally started to incubate and both were on the nest today.

3/21 – Sussex Co sites (Marianne Ofenloch) – had a male American Goldfinch sporting a lot of his spring gold & Brown-headed Cowbirds in yard. Species returning to Culvers and Swartswood Lakes have included Double-crested Cormorant, Pied-billed Grebe, Horned Grebe, Red-breasted Merganser, Long-tailed Duck, and Eastern Phoebe. A pair of Northern Shovelers were at Hainesville Wildlife Mgmt Area for a few days; as far as she knows, that was the first time the species has been seen there. American Woodcocks are performing around the county at dusk, and Killdeer are courting in many fields during the day. Resident Mute Swans, Canada Geese, and Great Blue Herons are all building or tending nests, while many waterfowl species are pairing, with drakes calling and displaying their finery.

3/21 – Oak Ridge (Alice Piatek and Alan Gutmore) – had a Red-bellied Woodpecker, Dark-eyed Juncos, Downy Woodpeckers, Black-capped Chickadees, Tufted Titmice, White-throated Sparrows, House Sparrows, American Goldfinches, Northern Cardinals, Blue Jays, American Robins, Wild Turkey, and Black Vultures.

3/21 – Wantage & Frankford Twps (Donna and Don Traylor) – Heard at Lusscroft Farm: Carolina Wren, Song and Field Sparrows, Pileated Woodpecker, and Eastern Phoebe. At Roy Road: a male American Kestrel was sitting on a wire. A bit later, we saw a female kestrel. A moment later, the male kestrel appeared and they commenced making little kestrels! In Frankford Twp yard: Wood Ducks and a good number of Dark-eyed Juncos and White-throated Sparrows; spring peepers were very loud last night.

3/21 – Culvers Lake (Fred Weber) – About 60 scaup sp. (bad shimmer) and 20 Long-tailed Ducks in one flock. Also 3 Horned Grebes and a female Red-breasted Merganser.

3/20 – Sparta Twp (Matt Skalla) – Had a flock of 24 Snow Geese in a cornfield off Limecrest-Randazzo Rd (on border of Lafayette Township). 22 of the 24 were blue-phase geese.

3/19 – Wallkill River NWR (Russ Edwards) – had 2 Great Blue Herons, Northern Pintail (8 on the back pond and several on the main pond), at least 8 pairs of Blue Winged-Teal in one group and several more in another, Mallard, Canada Geese, 1 male Belted Kingfisher, Red-winged Blackbirds, 2 Red-tailed Hawks, Turkey Vulture, 4 Mute Swan, and a muskrat.

3/19 – Kittatinny Valley State Park (Wade and Sharon Wander) – saw a small flock of Rusty Blackbirds. You may hear their squeaky calls before you see them. Rusty Blackbird is one of the most seriously declining species of land birds in North America.

3/19 – Lafayette Twp (Karyn Cichocki) – had 6 American Goldfinches, Dark-eyed Juncos, and lots of White-throated Sparrows. The Mourning Dove is sitting on its so-called nest, six twigs on the crossover of two cedar branches. The Cooper’s Hawk was hunting in the yard again. Heard an Eastern Bluebird and Wild Turkey calling. The Red-bellied Woodpecker is once again using our gutters for its sounding board and the Downy Woodpecker is drumming on the telephone pole.

3/19 – Swartswood Lake (Eileen and Glenn Mahler) – Canada Geese, Buffleheads, several Mute Swans, several Common Mergansers, a pair of Hooded Mergansers, a group of Ring-necked Ducks, and 3 Pied-billed Grebes.

3/18 – Frankford Twp (Donna and Don Traylor) – had Ruby-crowned Kinglet, Wood Ducks, and a Pileated Woodpecker eating suet.

3/17 – Hardyston Twp – Photo of a pair of Wood Ducks taken at Tamarack Lake by Jim Winters & submitted by Alice Piatekwodu

3/17 – Culvers Lake (Fred Weber) – had a pair of Long-tailed Ducks.

3/17 – Frankford Twp (Patricia Hefferan) – Two Belted Kingfishers on the wire over Winding Brook Farm (CR 565).

3/17 – Hyper Humus (Matt Skalla) – had a Long-tailed Duck on pond 2.long-tail

3/17 – Wallkill River NWR (Mary Clauss) – saw 6 Sandhill Cranes (2 young and 4 adults). IMG_1148

3/15 – Lafayette Twp (Karyn Cichocki) – had a female American Kestrel and an Eastern Meadowlark sitting on the wire alongside the road.

3/10 – Lafayette Twp (Karyn Cichocki) – the Song Sparrow that she spotted in late December that was missing a foot was back under the feeder. Also had a Mourning Dove on the front lawn picking up sticks and flying into the cedar trees with them, and 3 Carolina Wrens checking the inside of the garage as well as building a nest inside their box. Also heard wood frogs calling.

3/10 – Vernon Twp (Russ Edwards) – had a lone snow goose on Wawayanda Lake.

3/6 – Culvers Lake (Terry McQuillin) – had Common Grackles, Red-winged Blackbirds, Northern Cardinals, Tufted Titmice, White-breasted Nuthatches, Black-capped Chickadees, House Finches, American Goldfinches, Dark-eyed Juncos, Downy Woodpeckers, American Robins, Bald Eagles, and a very beautiful Red-shouldered Hawk. In addition to our resident Mute Swans, we continue to see Buffleheads, Common Goldeneye, several pairs of American Wigeons, & a pair of Wood Ducks. We’ve also seen the muskrat.

3/5 – Culvers Lake (Terry McQuillin) – had three Bald Eagles (2 juveniles & an adult). One of the young birds caught a good-sized fish and the other two chased it for a bit before flying away.

3/10 – Lafayette Twp & Hyper Humus (Karyn Cichocki) – had her first male Brown-headed Cowbird of the year. Also heard Dark-eyed Juncos, American Robins, Eastern Bluebird, & Carolina Wren calling. Hyper Humus – saw the pair of Bald Eagles mating in the tree next to their nest tree. Near the Rte 94 parking lot, there was another eagle that had a dirty white head with brown feathers and no white in the tail. Also heard Eastern Bluebirds and Hairy, Red-bellied, and Pileated Woodpeckers calling; there was a pair of Hooded Mergansers on pond 1.

2/26 – Lafayette Twp (Karyn Cichocki) – we had our first American Robins of the year in the yard. Also 2 male Red-winged Blackbirds, House Finches, Northern Cardinal, Song Sparrow, and Carolina Wren. We saw flocks of Common Grackles and American Robins on the way to the Sussex/Wantage library.

2/19 – Oak Ridge (Alice Piatek) – had about a dozen Common Grackles feeding on the suet and seed.

2/18 – Lafayette Twp (Karyn Cichocki) – We had an immature Cooper’s Hawk on our bench.Coops 2-14-20 c

2/17 – Sussex & Morris Co. sites (Alice Piatek & Al Gutmore) – Sightings today at Swartswood State Park included Red-tailed Hawk, Fish Crow, Mute Swans, Canada Geese, Common Mergansers, and Buffleheads. On Main St. in Sparta, a Northern Nockingbird was observed. At Mahlon Dickerson Reservation in Jefferson, saw 1 Red-tailed Hawk, 1 Turkey Vulture, 1 American Crow. On Russia Brook in Jefferson, 2 Mallards were seen.

2/14 – Lafayette Twp (Karyn Cichocki) – had 2 male Red-winged Blackbirds and a Common Grackle.
Yesterday, saw a huge flock of mixed blackbirds, mostly Common Grackles, on Statesville Quarry Road.

2/11 – Lafayette Twp (Karyn Cichocki) – had our first male Red-wing Blackbird of the year.

2/11 – Westtown, NY (Russ Edwards) – had a brief 3-4 minute sighting of the Golden Eagle first reported Feb. 3rd on Orange County rare bird alerts. Also had 2 Red-tailed Hawks in the same vicinity and a third in Pine Island.

2/7 – Oak Ridge (Alice Piatek) – had Dark-eyed Juncos, Black-capped Chickadees, Northern Cardinals, Blue Jays, White-throated Sparrows, Tufted Titmice, Downy and Red-bellied Woodpeckers, White-breasted Nuthatches, and Mourning Doves in the yard.

2/5 – Frankford Twp (Terry McQuillin) – had a Snow Goose among the dozens of Canada Geese at the county fairgrounds pond.

2/2 – Andover Twp (Deborah Bifulco) – there are large numbers of Snow Geese around Andover Twp, including several thousand flying over the house this morning in huge skeins. Yesterday, had my first Purple Finch of the year at the feeders, briefly. Also had American Goldfinches and Wild Turkeys.

1/22 – Lafayette Twp (Karyn Cichocki) – had about 10 Cedar Waxwings, an American Tree Sparrow, a Red-bellied Woodpecker, and an American Goldfinch which had a very yellow chin and some black cap feathers.

1/20 – Lafayette Twp (Karyn Cichocki) – had a Common Grackle hanging around the feeders. It spent more time approaching them than actually feeding.

1/19 – Andover Twp (Deborah Bifulco) – Big numbers of Dark-eyed Juncos and White-throated Sparrows as well as 8 Northern Cardinals, 6 American Goldfinches (some showing signs of spring molt already), a Song Sparrow, and 3 American Tree Sparrows.  The following day, I had a Red-winged Blackbird, a Common Grackle, and about 20 Brown-headed Cowbirds, in addition to all the regulars.  For the last month, I’ve had daily visits from six Wild Turkeys; three toms and three females/juveniles.


1/18 – Lafayette Twp (Karyn Cichocki) – was quite surprised to see about 15 female & male Brown-headed Cowbirds under the feeder.

1/18 – Oak Ridge (Alice Piatek) – had 4 male and 3 female Northern Cardinals; 1 Carolina Wren; 1 Red-bellied Woodpecker; 1 Downy Woodpecker; 3 Mourning Doves; a dozen Dark-eyed Juncos; 1 House Sparrow; a dozen White-throated Sparrows; 1 Song Sparrow? (heavily streaked, dark breast dot, longer tail which he pumped up & down); 3 White-breasted Nuthatches; 1 American Goldfinch; and 2 Black-capped Chickadees.

1/14 – Warren Co. (Bob Cappuccio) – The fields along Rt. 519 in Belvidere were loaded with thousands of Snow Geese.

1/12 – Frankford Twp (Donna and Don Traylor) – heard & saw a Belted Kingfisher in their yard stream & heard an Eastern Screech-Owl in the backyard. They saw a Barred Owl at dusk on George Hill Road.

1/8 – Mt. Olive Twp, Morris Co. (Alan Boyd) – The Eastern Screech-Owl in our yard has reappeared after being absent for a year or so. At least I think it’s the same bird. It sits out in the hole most days even when the sun isn’t shining on it.

1/5 – Culvers Lake (Lee and Terry McQuillin) – We have been watching lots of Bald Eagle activity and antics.